by David Safier
"Right now I think there's more danger of the situation locking up and us not getting a budget out than vice versa," said Sen. John Huppenthal, R-Chandler.
Sen. Barbara Leff, R-Paradise Valley, said she can't support budget cuts that include the KidsCare health insurance program, eliminating Healthcare Group and wiping out the state Department of Commerce.
For Sen. Jonathan Paton, R-Tucson, cuts to the University of Arizona, including the internationally known Poison and Drug Information Center, and reducing veterans' service officers go too far.
Of course, they have a way out if they can't agree.
If House and Senate leaders can't find the votes in their own caucuses, they could look to Democrats. But chances of getting Democratic votes for the type of cuts that are being contemplated are almost nil.
"We want to make this process as transparent as possible," Pearce said. "(But) we don't want 300 people signing up just to whine."